Inside 2023’s Biggest Condo Launch: Everything You Need to Know About Grand Dunman
- Ryan J
- June 21, 2023
- 6 min read
It’s been a while since we’ve had two new condos launching on the very same weekend – Grand Dunman (near Old Airport Road and Dakota), and Pinetree Hill (along Ulu Pandan Road in Clementi). For those looking for a new launch, mark your calendars for the 1st of July when the public launch begins.
There’s been a lot of hype about Grand Dunman, which is unsurprising given it is going to be the biggest launch of the year (it is a mega-development of 1,008 units). It’s located in an area where homebuyers currently have the luxury of choice (The Continuum and Tembusu Grand have only recently launched). As such, some buyers have even been waiting for this to decide which is the most suitable for them out of the trio.
Both are coming at a time when housing prices are still at a peak; and with more new supply in the pipeline, buyers can afford to be a little more choosy. We can expect these two projects to be heavily marketed, as buyers become increasingly resistant to higher price points. Here are the essential details to know:
- 1. One of the few mega-developments in its area
- 2. Short walking distance to Dakota MRT
- 3. Access to two foodie havens, Old Airport Road and Tanjong Katong
- 4. Proximity to Chung Cheng, Tanjong Katong Girls School, and Kong Hwa Primary School
- 5. Sizeable units, and some private lifts despite being a mega-development
- 6. 1:1 car park lots and fewer units than expected
1. One of the few mega-developments in its area
The area immediately surrounding Grand Dunman has long been characterised by boutique condos and landed homes. Many of these are soon to be in their 20th year. Typical examples of condos in this area are Taipan Jade (12 units), Signature Residence (only five units), and Estique (28 units).
While these are more exclusive, they also allow Grand Dunman to better differentiate itself. A mega-development tends to combine a lower price point, with much better facilities (there’s only so much room for pools, gyms, etc. in tiny boutique projects).
This will mean that, for buyers who want a proper-sized lap pool, tennis court, clubhouse, etc., Grand Dunman immediately outweighs the competition. Even the newer launches appearing nearby (see below) are smaller than Grand Dunman. So expect to see facilities like a huge swimming pool, 2 clubhouses, and even unique ones like a golf simulator room and a couple of commercial units (that the public can access).
The second factor is price. As we’ve seen in mega-developments like Treasure at Tampines, Parc Clematis, and Normanton Park, mega-projects tend toward a more attractive price psf because of better economies of scale.
Given that 2023 is still such a pricey market, prospective buyers will be closely watching for price discrepancies against The Continuum and Tembusu Grand.
2. Short walking distance to Dakota MRT
Dakota MRT station (CCL) is a very short walk from Grand Dunman, which is estimated to be around 2 to 3 minutes. This is one of the biggest differentiators to its new launch competitors nearby, and something that buyers are sensitive to given the high prices of COE today.
Also, a big part of the appeal is that Dakota is just one stop from Paya Lebar MRT. This is where you’ll find Paya Lebar Quarter (PLQ), a recently developed commercial hub with three major malls (PLQ, Paya Lebar Square, and Sing Post Centre), as well as Grade A office spaces.
3. Access to two foodie havens, Old Airport Road and Tanjong Katong
Old Airport Road Food Centre is considered an institution by foodies, with people from as far as Bedok and Punggol coming by just to eat or ta-pau food. The food centre is located just a bit further down the road from the Dakota MRT station.
As an added benefit, you’ll enter the Dakota HDB cluster while walking to the food centre. There are the usual HDB amenities here as well, and the nearest NTUC FairPrice is also around here at Jalan Tiga.
Alternatively, you can walk in the opposite direction along Dunman Road, and then turn into Tanjong Katong Road. This is another foodie haven, with famous eateries like Punggol Nasi Lemak and Eng’s Wanton Mee.
4. Proximity to Chung Cheng, Tanjong Katong Girls School, and Kong Hwa Primary School
These three schools are considered quite prestigious, and all are within the one-kilometre Home School Distance (although obviously, the only one that matters to parents will be Kong Hwa Primary School).
Chung Cheng is the closest at 300 metres, and at around 9 minutes is an easy walk for young students. Kong Hwa Primary and TKGS are around 450 metres and 530 metres respectively, and also manageable on foot (perhaps a little longer at 10 minutes or so).
Getting to school tends to involve passing by the foodie stretches, so as an added convenience you can get your children to buy food on the way home.
5. Sizeable units, and some private lifts despite being a mega-development
Private lifts are less common for mass-market properties, but Grand Dunman does offer these for some units as it looks to target the more mass-affluent crowd (as you can tell by the name).
The project is divided into towers, named the Grand Collection and the Luxury Collection. This is spread among 7 blocks that go up to 18 stories.
In the Luxury Collection, two of the four and five-bedder layouts (4BL and 5BL) come with private lifts; but not the other unit types.
In the Grand Collection, all units – even the smaller three-bedders – come with private lifts.
Given the large 1,000+ unit count, it would have been forgivable if many of the units were on the smaller side; but it’s nice to see they’re not. Standard three-bedders start from 1,119 sq. ft and go up to 1,335 sq. ft., which is comfortable for families.
On the 18th floor and up, the living/dining area of some three-bedder units has a floor-to-ceiling height of 4.7 metres, which really opens up the space visually.
Even the smaller two-bedders are around 667 sq. ft., which is still manageable for a couple with one or two children.
6. 1:1 car park lots and fewer units than expected
Despite the generous 25,234 square meter plot of land, the developers consciously chose not to exploit it to the fullest. Instead, they prioritised creating more spacious living spaces, ensuring that each bedroom could comfortably accommodate a queen-sized bed, at the very least.
Furthermore, in alignment with Singapore’s move towards a car-lite society, the Range-based Parking Provision Standards (RPPS) ordinarily would have dictated a less-than-one-to-one ratio for car park lots. So to still have a 1:1 ratio of car park lots (and being so close to the MRT station), is quite an impressive feat. Those who are looking at the bigger units should be happy here, as you likely would be able to park more than one car.
Some things to note:
- A lot of recent competition in the area
- Inherent issues with mega-developments
- Some blocks are not as close to the low-density side
1. A lot of recent competition in the area
As mentioned above, The Continuum and Tembusu Grand will almost certainly be seen as alternatives. Those with an investment mindset need to consider if, further down the road, this would just mean competition for tenants, or at the point of resale.
Bear in mind Grand Dunman already has a high unit count on its own, as there’s enough competition within even the same development.
Another factor is the many surrounding boutique projects. These small projects are freehold, and it’s generally not favourable to be a leasehold project amid many freehold neighbours.
But as we mentioned above, these smaller projects lack comparable facilities, and there’s a notable age gap.
2. Inherent issues with mega-developments
An ongoing worry with mega-developments is whether the facilities are big enough. They’re certainly larger than most regular condos, but we have to take into account the bigger number of households.
As one example, Grand Dunman appears to have only one tennis court, which seems likely to be overbooked (although on the bright side, the gym seems to be bigger than usual).
Another factor is whether there are too many other listings to compete with, when it comes time to sell or rent out your unit. There’s also the issue of larger developments being generally harder to en-bloc, many years down the road; and Grand Dunman’s leasehold status may compound this issue (Developers can be more generous toward freehold properties, as they don’t need to top up the lease).
3. Some blocks are not as close to the low-density side
From observation of the overall site, it seems that units on the south side are closer to a low-density landed enclave. Those on the north side may be closer to the noisier – and possibly less scenic – road and nearby projects.
This might skew buyers and future returns toward the stacks closer to the landed area; and it remains to be seen if those stacks have a more premium pricing.
We’ll follow this up with more in-depth reviews, with a breakdown of the interiors as well. Follow us on Stacked for that, and for insights into the current property market.